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GEN News Highlights : Apr 23, 2013

Layoffs and Breakup at Roche

Roche today announced the dissolution of its Applied Science Business Area, which is part of the firm’s Diagnostics Division. This restructuring move will affect approximately 110 positions in Penzberg, Germany, and another 60 in Branford, CT, the company said.

The firm’s Applied Science portfolio will be integrated within its other diagnostics business areas. In a statement, Roche said the changes are meant to “streamline decision-making and enhance technology flow from research use to the clinical setting.”

Additionally, Roche has ended of its quest to develop a nanopore-based sequencing platform in partnership with IBM. The company cites technical risks.

“Following assessment of its sequencing R&D portfolio, Roche has decided to return the ISFET project for the development of a semiconductor-based sequencing system to DNA Electronics,” the company said. “Roche believes that it will be unable to disrupt the market with the product at launch.”

In a statement, Roche added that it “remains committed to the life-science business.”